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Gobynose

Macroalgae pH swings in 20 gallon

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Gobynose

Hi all,

 

I’m in the process of setting up my first saltwater tank. My plan is to work towards having the following animals over the next year:

2 green banded gobies

2 peppermint shrimp

2 trochus snails

1 dwarf blue hermit 

 

I already have the hermit. I wouldn’t have picked him but he crawled out of my live rock when I put it in the tank to start cycling and two days later he’s still alive so for the time being I’m including him in my plans. If he dies, then I would get a couple of cerith and nassarius snails along with the trochus.

 

After this first year/after I know I can keep the animals listed above happy and healthy, I’d like to add LPS and maybe some SPS corals.

 

My plan is to not use any mechanical filtration. I’ve been reading about macroalgae and I think it’s beautiful and it seems like it could be a good addition to my tank since I’m relying on live rock so far. However, would the pH day/night swings be an issue if I had some sea lettuce, brown oro and dragons breath in a 20 gallon tank? I don’t have the space or money for a sump so I wouldn’t be able to have the lights on in a refugium at night while they were off in the main tank.  I’ve read that one shouldn’t chase pH and it seems like getting some macros and testing day and night to quantify the difference would lead to chasing pH. Do any of you have any idea as to whether this would be a problem for fish? Shrimp? Corals? If I were to just try it out do any of you know how green banded gobies show signs of stress? I’d hate to perform an experiment where I only knew what the results were because they died unnecessarily..

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Ratvan

The Gobies come from Littoral Zones (think submerged shallow rockpools) they'll love the macro (or the pods that live in them). I have a similar species (Redheaded Gobies) they love the macro so much they spread certain types of it, and the barnacles that I have in the tank. 

 

I've had macro in each tank I have set up (beware certain Caulerpa species) and not had any "serious" issues

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Gobynose

Yeah one of the main reasons I started looking into macro was that I saw it in pictures when I was looking up their habitat. I just don’t want to kill them off with an unstable tank. The goal is to make the happy and healthy.

 

How long have you had your red headed gobies and macro in your tank?

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billygoat

I imagine that pH swings due to day/night changes in CO2 concentration should generally only be a concern if your tank is heavily stocked with fish along with a lot of macroalgae. In the beginning I don't think you should worry too much about it. Surface agitation to improve gas exchange can also help to stabilize the pH of your aquarium's water. Using an airstone, overflow box, or hang-on-back filter to break up the surface tension at night could be an option if pH swings end up being a problem, but again, I wouldn't worry about it unless it definitively proves to be an issue. 👍

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SaltyBuddha

I've got a 20g macro tank with a lot of algae but only two fish right now. It is about a year and a half old. Even when I had 4 fish I never noticed PH swings and didn't even track them. I think the same principle applies that you should not try to buffer PH. I've always kept good surface movement and it's fine.

 

Worry more about PO4, NO3, and ALK. 

 

Macros uptake bicarbonate and that will reduce your Alk. Without two part my macro tank consistently runs at 5.5 dKh even with a weekly 25% water change at 8.5 dKh.

 

The macros will drain A LOT of PO4. I have to dose this everyday because feeding is impractical. They also uptake NO3 but I only have to dose this once a week now. Dosing PO4 and NO3 is necessary for a macro tank with any types of coral.

 

I lovey macro tank and it's great to see all the critters that come with the macro. Highly recommend it, but it is not nearly as easy as I thought at first and I've had a lot of ups and downs. Including cyanoalgae, tank crashing and most recently dinoflagellates 

 

 

 

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Ratvan
7 hours ago, Gobynose said:

Yeah one of the main reasons I started looking into macro was that I saw it in pictures when I was looking up their habitat. I just don’t want to kill them off with an unstable tank. The goal is to make the happy and healthy.

 

How long have you had your red headed gobies and macro in your tank?

About 8 months, had some issues with Caulerpa "going sexual" at the start but not affected the Gobies as far as I can tell 

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